Thursday, September 29, 2005

My dog is some sort of celebrity.

I’m not entirely sure how this works. Suffice it to say I can’t walk him down the street without being stopped over and over. He’s cute, I’ll give him that. There’s something about a big, wrinkly, slobbery grinning dog that just screams, “love me, pet me, worship me. Right now,” especially to women everywhere, and doubly especially to uuper-dooper cute young ladies. Not that this helps me any. I don’t swing that way. But my fiancée seems to enjoy it.

I am not sure how that works, though. Here comes a beast known by the nickname “Slushmug”, who snores and passes more gas than a cow bent on ecological destruction. He has a huge head that splits open when he’s grinning, which he does often. He’s hairy, chubby, and drooly. Somehow, ladies get a subconscious urge to run up and melt over him. Now if he were, say, a man and not a dog, I have trouble seeing the same women wanting to stop, coo, and rub his tummy. They’d probably cross the street, or just save time and go for a quick restraining order.

But no, Halsey is a dog, which means he is just the cutest drool factory around. I can see it. I’m his owner; I really do think he’s adorable. I’m just amazed at how many other people do.

Here’s the rub, though. Everyone who goes gaga on over him remembers him. Forever. By name. There are chic stores and boutiques in LA where a lurch trough the door is always greeted with “HAAAAALLLLLLLSSSEEEEEEYYYYYY! You’re back! Look, everyone, it’s Halsey! How are you?” and a rush of admiring clerks. People on the street remember him. Everyone in the neighborhood, and by that I mean the San Fernando Valley and parts of Century City, knows the dog by name. They have no clue who I am, however. I’m just that person at the other end of the leash. My sole purpose seems to have become as a sort of dog docent; I answer questions. Usually the same ones over and over.

I swear, I’m going to get a t-shirt printed up:

You may pet my dog.

He’s a boy.

He’s a bulldog.

65 pounds.

His name is Halsey (as if they didn’t already know).

He does snore.

Not more than any other dog his size.

No, he doesn’t bite.

Yes, he’s fixed, and no, he doesn’t seem to notice. He can’t reach back there to see.

I don’t really mind it all, I just wish someone would perhaps slip a little question about me in there. I like to talk to people, too!

A walk that might take anyone not blessed with such a chick-magnet dog say, half an hour, could take me twice to three times that due totally to adoring fans. Then again, he’s not one of those stuck-up celebrities, like Shaquille O’Neal (who once was so desperate to ignore me, he stared over my head at a wall for 10 minutes. This was not difficult.). Halsey is thrilled to meet anyone. He’s perfectly happy to grin, kiss, or drool on anyone, no matter who they are. He even poses for pictures. If he can, he’ll autograph their clothes with slobber. Trust me, it never fully washes out.

Perhaps I shouldn’t complain. I mean, he makes time for me. Usually.


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